A Prayer for Vindication and Deliverance
43 1 Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause against an ungodly people; from those who are deceitful and unjust deliver me! 2 For you are the God in whom I take refuge; why have you cast me off? Why must I walk about mournfully because of the oppression of the enemy? 3 O send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling. 4 Then I will go to the altar of God, to God my exceeding joy; and I will praise you with the harp, O God, my God. 5 Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my help and my God.
Former Deliverances and Present Troubles
44 1 We have heard with our ears, O God, our ancestors have told us, what deeds you performed in their days, in the days of old: 2 you with your own hand drove out the nations, but them you planted; you afflicted the peoples, but them you set free; 3 for not by their own sword did they win the land, nor did their own arm give them victory; but your right hand, and your arm, and the light of your countenance, for you delighted in them. 4 You are my King and my God; you command victories for Jacob. 5 Through you we push down our foes; through your name we tread down our assailants. 6 For not in my bow do I trust, nor can my sword save me. 7 But you have saved us from our foes, and have put to confusion those who hate us. 8 In God we have boasted continually, and we will give thanks to your name forever. Selah
9 Yet you have rejected us and abased us, and have not gone out with our armies. 10 You made us turn back from the foe, and our enemies have gotten spoil. 11 You have made us like sheep for slaughter, and have scattered us among the nations. 12 You have sold your people for a trifle, demanding no high price for them. 13 You have made us the taunt of our neighbors, the derision and scorn of those around us. 14 You have made us a byword among the nations, a laughingstock among the peoples. 15 All day long my disgrace is before me, and shame has covered my face 16 at the words of the taunters and revilers, at the sight of the enemy and the avenger.
17 All this has come upon us, yet we have not forgotten you, or been false to your covenant. 18 Our heart has not turned back, nor have our steps departed from your way, 19 yet you have broken us in the haunt of jackals, and covered us with deep darkness. 20 If we had forgotten the name of our God, or spread out our hands to a strange god, 21 would not God discover this? For he knows the secrets of the heart. 22 Because of you we are being killed all day long, and accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 23 Rouse yourself! Why do you sleep, O Lord? Awake, do not cast us off forever! 24 Why do you hide your face? Why do you forget our affliction and oppression? 25 For we sink down to the dust; our bodies cling to the ground. 26 Rise up, come to our help. Redeem us for the sake of your steadfast love.
A Song for the King's Marriage
45 1 My heart overflows with a goodly theme; I address my verses to the king; my tongue is like the pen of a ready scribe. 2 You are the most handsome of men; grace is poured upon your lips; therefore God has blessed you forever. 3 Gird your sword on your thigh, O mighty one, in your glory and majesty. 4 In your majesty ride on victoriously for the cause of truth and to defend the right; let your right hand teach you dread deeds. 5 Your arrows are sharp in the heart of the king's enemies; the peoples fall under you.
6 Your throne, O God, endures forever and ever. Your royal scepter is a scepter of equity; 7 you love righteousness and hate wickedness. Therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions; 8 your robes are all fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia. From ivory palaces stringed instruments make you glad; 9 daughters of kings are among your ladies of honor; at your right hand stands the queen in gold of Ophir.
10 Hear, O daughter, consider and incline your ear; forget your people and your father's house, 11 and the king will desire your beauty. Since he is your lord, bow to him; 12 the people of Tyre will seek your favor with gifts, the richest of the people 13 with all kinds of wealth. The princess is decked in her chamber with gold-woven robes; 14 in many-colored robes she is led to the king; behind her the virgins, her companions, follow. 15 With joy and gladness they are led along as they enter the palace of the king. 16 In the place of ancestors you, O king, shall have sons; you will make them princes in all the earth. 17 I will cause your name to be celebrated in all generations; therefore the peoples will praise you forever and ever.
The Folly of Trusting in Riches
49 1 Hear this, all you peoples; give ear, all inhabitants of the world, 2 both low and high, rich and poor together. 3 My mouth shall speak wisdom; the meditation of my heart shall be understanding. 4 I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will solve my riddle to the music of the harp. 5 Why should I fear in times of trouble, when the iniquity of my persecutors surrounds me,
6 those who trust in their wealth and boast of the abundance of their riches? 7 Truly, no ransom avails for one's life, there is no price one can give to God for it. 8 For the ransom of life is costly, and can never suffice, 9 that one should live on forever and never see the grave. 10 When we look at the wise, they die; fool and dolt perish together and leave their wealth to others. 11 Their graves are their homes forever, their dwelling places to all generations, though they named lands their own. 12 Mortals cannot abide in their pomp; they are like the animals that perish. 13 Such is the fate of the foolhardy, the end of those who are pleased with their lot. Selah 14 Like sheep they are appointed for Sheol; Death shall be their shepherd; straight to the grave they descend, and their form shall waste away; Sheol shall be their home.
15 But God will ransom my soul from the power of Sheol, for he will receive me. Selah 16 Do not be afraid when some become rich, when the wealth of their houses increases. 17 For when they die they will carry nothing away; their wealth will not go down after them. 18 Though in their lifetime they count themselves happy -for you are praised when you do well for yourself- 19 they will go to the company of their ancestors, who will never again see the light. 20 Mortals cannot abide in their pomp; they are like the animals that perish.
Longing for God's House
84 1 How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts! 2 My soul longs, indeed it faints for the courts of the Lord; my heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God. 3 Even the sparrow finds a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, at your altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God. 4 Happy are those who live in your house, ever singing your praise. Selah 5 Happy are those whose strength is in you, in whose heart are the highways to Zion. 6 As they go through the valley of Baca they make it a place of springs; the early rain also covers it with pools. 7 They go from strength to strength; the God of gods will be seen in Zion.
8 O Lord God of hosts, hear my prayer; give ear, O God of Jacob! Selah 9 Behold our shield, O God; look on the face of your anointed. 10 For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than live in the tents of wickedness. 11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield; he bestows favor and honor. No good thing does the Lord withhold from those who walk uprightly. 12 O Lord of hosts, happy is everyone who trusts in you.
A Prayer for God's Mercy on Israel
85 1 Lord, you were favorable to your land; you restored the fortunes of Jacob. 2 You forgave the iniquity of your people; you pardoned all their sin. Selah 3 You withdrew all your wrath; you turned from your hot anger. 4 Restore us again, O God of our salvation, and put away your indignation toward us. 5 Will you be angry with us forever? Will you prolong your anger to all generations? 6 Will you not revive us again, so that your people may rejoice in you? 7 Show us your steadfast love, O Lord, and grant us your salvation.
8 Let me hear what God the Lord will speak, for he will speak peace to his people, to his faithful, to those who turn to him in their hearts. 9 Surely his salvation is at hand for those who fear him, that his glory may dwell in our land. 10 Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet; righteousness and peace will kiss each other. 11 Faithfulness will spring up from the ground, and righteousness will look down from the sky. 12 The Lord will give what is good, and our land will yield its increase. 13 Righteousness will go before him, and will make a path for his steps.
The Privileges of Dwelling in Zion
4 Among those who know me I mention Rahab and Babylon; Philistia too, and Tyre, with Ethiopia - "This one was born there," they say. 5 And of Zion it shall be said, "This one and that one were born in it"; for the Most High himself will establish it. 6 The Lord records, as he registers the peoples, "This one was born there." Selah 7 Singers and dancers alike say, "All my springs are in you."